The Chicago Neighborhood Guidebook
Edited by Martha Bayne
Belt Publishing, 2019

Named one of the best nonfiction books about Chicago of the 21st century by Chicago Magazine.

“Required reading …. reinforces what an amazing and interesting place [Chicago] is, filled with talented writers and artists who contributed to the book. But it also requires the reader to see the city anew, to confront its problems and not fall back on empty sentiment.” —John Warner, Chicago Tribune

“A stirring, entertaining and informative collection of works … The Chicago Neighborhood Guidebook is a symphony of the city – unharmonious, often tragic, sometimes ridiculous, yet always home.”—Alex Bean, Chicago Detours

“You would be a fool not to have this on your bookshelf … An essential and tremendously enjoyable book.” —Rick Kogan, After Hours With Rick Kogan


Cover and book design by David Wilson.


Red State Blues: Stories From Midwestern Life on the Left
Edited by Martha Bayne
Belt Publishing, 2018

“Instead of seeing this collection as a gathering of frustrated liberal voices eager to be heard above the nativist din, Red State Blues is closer to a blues lament.” —Chris Barsanti, Rain Taxi Review of Books

Much has been made of the 2016 electoral flip of traditionally Democratic states like Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Ohio to tip Donald Trump into the presidency. Countless think pieces have explored this newfound exotic constituency of blue voters who swung red. But what about those who remain true blue? Red State Blues speaks to the lived experience of progressives, activists, and ordinary Democrats pushing back against simplistic narratives of the Midwest as “Trump Country.” They’ve been there all along, and as the essays in this collection demonstrate, they’re not leaving anytime soon. 



Cover and book design by David Wilson.


RBC_coverRust Belt Chicago: An Anthology
Edited by Martha Bayne
Belt Publishing, 2017

Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology, the neighborhood cookbook taking the pulse of post-industrial Chicago right now, seems like required reading.”— Emma Terhaar, Third Coast Review

“A lively grab bag of essays, fiction and poetry that reads at times like who’s who of contemporary Chicago writers/residents.”  — Chris Borrelli, Chicago Tribune

“One of the best books to come across my desk that I can frankly remember.”—Rick Kogan, After Hours With Rick Kogan





Cover image by Tony Fitzpatrick; book design by Sheila Sachs


bookcoverSoup & Bread Cookbook: Building Community One Pot at a Time
By Martha Bayne
Parafine Press, second edition 2020

“A book like this makes me think that really, I could live a lovely and fulfilling life and eat only soup.” —Julia Kramer, Time Out Chicago

“Martha Bayne’s new book is a reflection on the cultural importance of soup as much as a cookbook…The book reflects the almost palpable enthusiasm for soup that can be felt at the [Soup & Bread] events.” —Julia Thiel, Chicago Reader

“A charming array of soup facts, recipes, and images that make readers just long for cold nights with a bowl of something starchy and pureed.” —The A.V. Club

“One of the most thought-provoking (and appetizing!) books I’ve picked up in a long time.” —Tamar Fleishman, Baltimore Examiner

Book design by Sheila Sachs; illustrations by Paul Dolan